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Treasures of Zambales

—One Zambales Facebook Page

—One Zambales Facebook Page

There’s a reason why Zambales has become a favorite weekend getaway of those yearning to commune with nature. The province abounds with so many sites to see, explore and enjoy—from its beautiful beaches, camping grounds, to the lush mountains and waterfalls.

Zambales indeed offers many hidden gems that should be part of your travel bucket list. Here are some of them.

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Rodriguez Ranch

Known as the “New Zealand” of Zambales, this hidden paradise in San Marcelino is perfect for nature lovers, with its lush trees, fresh air and breathtaking views of Mapanuepe Lake and Mt. Pinatubo. You’ll never run out of things to do in this camping grounds—you can swim, kayak, sightsee, fish, or simply enjoy this relaxing time with family and friends.

 —Ramon FVelasquez via Wikimedia Commons

—Ramon FVelasquez via Wikimedia Commons

Ina Poon Bato Shrine

“Apo Apang” was a rock figure worshiped by the Aetas way before the arrival of missionaries in the Philippines. Surprisingly, this figure resembled the Blessed Virgin Mary and exhibited miracles according to the locals. This image is now known as “Ina Poon Bato” and is deemed to be the oldest image of Mother Mary in Asia. Located at the Poon Bato Church in Botolan, this shrine has since attracted pilgrims and history enthusiasts alike.

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—Aajim via Wikimedia Commons

—Aajim via Wikimedia Commons

Mount Tapulao

Dubbed as High Peak, Mount Tapulao is said to be Zambales’ tallest mountain as it rises to an elevation of 2,037 kilometers above sea level. It is characterized by surrounding pine trees, a mossy forest, and a semi-temperate climate. As you reach its summit, you will be greeted by a majestic view of the West Philippine Sea. You can go for a day hike or overnight trek. The jump-off point is located at Palauig, which is 18 kilometers from Mount Tapulao’s peak.

Lubong Nangoloan/Anghalo Falls —Lakwatserongrex.wordpress.com

Lubong Nangoloan/Anghalo Falls —Lakwatserongrex.wordpress.com

Lubong Nangoloan Falls / Anghalo Falls

There’s no better way to cool down during the summer than to plunge into cool waters beneath cascading waterfalls. Located in San Felipe, this waterfall was recently developed into a nature park that entices tourists to wade in its freshwater. The adventure begins as you cross a bamboo bridge and hike for about 20 minutes before seeing the roaring waterfalls in all its glory. Thrill-seekers and adrenaline junkies should not miss out on this.

 —Faith Sanctuary, Airbnb.com/rooms/53035471

—Faith Sanctuary, Airbnb.com/rooms/53035471

Faith Sanctuary

Looking for a more chill, relaxing vibe for your vacation? Check out Faith Sanctuary, a private AirBnB resort featuring modern nipa huts good for 12, an outdoor swimming pool, a landscaped garden, and lush greenery. It also has access to a semi-private beach with fine sand, sapphire blue waters, and a stunning view of Zambales’ mountain range. Best of all, Faith Sanctuary is also the perfect take off point to other amazing sites in Zambales.

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